We also believe that it is not enough to just enable Internet access: Everyone should be able to enjoy and leverage the resources of the online world. Today, many of the under-connected are in emerging Asia, but there are also under-connected pockets of people in Europe and the Nordic region. Bringing the benefits of digital access to all remains one of Telenor’s key ambitions.
Digital skills and awareness are essential enablers of mobile internet adoption. People need to see how being online adds relevance and benefit to their lives. They also need the necessary skills to take advantage of those opportunities.
Across our footprint we make efforts to reach out to under-connected groups. We want to better understand the barriers people are facing, and we want to see if there are things we can do to address those barriers in a meaningful way. Often this means working with experienced partners who know the target communities well and share our ambition to see reduced inequalities.
In Thailand, dtac continues to develop its SMART Farmer project – in close cooperation with local authorities. Their shared objective is to empower farmers by providing access to essential agricultural data and information through mobile phones and by training young farmers to develop their own online marketing. In 2016, training programmes were running in 41 provinces with an overall attendance of approximately 3,000 farmers. Recently dtac partnered with Thailand’s Electronics and Computer Technology Centre, to develop a sophisticated IoT solution to help farmers track key parameters. With sensor-based and solar-powered devices in their hands, farmers are able to monitor light, humidity, temperature, water, wind and pH levels. The devices are linked to a router with a dtac SIM relaying the information to the cloud. This enables the system to send targeted information to the farmer’s mobile device based on the acquired granular data from each specific farm.
These are just two examples of how we are using mobile communications to contribute to positive change in people’s lives. There are many other initiatives that we are involved in, and some of them are featured elsewhere on our website.
At Telenor we are proud to be partnering with UNICEF. Together we strive to improve the situation for disadvantaged children in many of the countries where we operate, using ICTs as our main tools for change. Please visit our UNICEF section for more information on our joint work.
As part of our effort to better understand how the mobile phone impacts society Telenor Group has commissioned studies on the socio-economic impact of the Internet and of mobile communications, mobile financial services and mobile health. These reports are available through the link below.